Baseball Betting Tips- How to Bet on MLB Games
Compared to the NBA and NFL and Hockey, baseball is not a very popular sport to bet. It is somewhat strange as there are plenty of betting opportunities with each team playing an immense 162 regular season games!
This means that bookmakers in Canada and around the world are coming out with attractive odds for baseball betting. So if you like to bet on sports from Canada and want to get a bang for your buck you should definitely try your hand at baseball betting.
The Major League Baseball season usually kicks off on April and is scheduled to end on the of November . In almost every MLB season a postseason is played after the regular season, this time around it goes into early November.
MLB teams usually play six games days per week during the regular season. During this time, MLB games are played every day of the week except Mondays and Thursdays.
Baseball may seem like pretty simple sport to understand.
The pitcher pitches the ball to the hitter while the hitter tries to score home runs and make his way around the bases to score runs while the pitcher’s teammates, the fielders prevent the hitter from scoring.
The team with the most runs at the end of the nine innings wins.
Sounds like some basic stuff, but the reality is that baseball is way more complicated than that.
Behind the scenes, many variables are in play that affect a game of baseball, teams use complicated strategies to manipulate the outcome of the game. It is essential for you to know about what goes on behind the scenes. The reason for this is simple. if you know about what goes on behind the scenes, it gives you an edge while betting on Baseball.
How to bet on MLB
We will be covering five basic baseball tips that you need to know about while betting on baseball.
Baseball betting tip 1: Start with the Starters
It is often believed that the starting pitcher impacts the outcome of a baseball game.
According to statistics, the best hitters in MLB usually get only 4 to 5 chances to bat during an average baseball game during an MLB season.
Pitchers on the other hand get to pitch a maximum of 10 times. Starters clock in the most game time during the majority of the season.
A strong pitcher can be vital for any baseball team. A good pitcher can destroy even the strongest lineups. Conversely, a pitcher who is an bad form can result in the opposing team with a very average line up lighting up the scoreboard.
Casual bettors mistakenly assume that betting on “better” teams like the Dodgers against weaker opponents say the Blue Jays pays. Sure, Over an entire season the Dogers will be the dominant team. But things can change during an individual game.
The scales can be balanced even in games between clear favorites and underdogs by the pitching matchup. When the stronger team’s pitcher is injured or in bad form a weaker team will play with a lot of intensity and confidence and make the most of this opportunity.
This raises the question, how can you know which pitchers you should bet on and which pitchers you should bet against. There are many stats out there that professional baseball bettors rely on to assess the strengths and weaknesses of a pitcher to make a calculated bet.
We have mentioned those stats below:
Earned Run Average (ERA)
The Earned Run Average or ERA is basically the average runs a pitcher gives away per game while factoring the error of fielders.
This means that the ERA only takes into account the average number of runs that the opposition earned by the pitcher.
The ERA can help you estimate how many runs the hitters will earn from a certain pitcher and help you determine whether the pitcher you are checking out is worth betting on or not.
Walks + Hits Per Inning Pitched (WHIP)
The next stat you need to check out to determine how good a pitcher is called WHIP. WHIP stands for walks and hits per inning pitched.
WHIP shows you how well a pitcher has kept runners off the basepaths. WHIP is calculated by dividing the sum of the number of walks and hits the pitcher caused divided by the total number of innings the pitcher made a pitch.
The WHIP of an average MLB pitcher is around 1.30. So a pitcher with a WHIP lower than 1.30 is a pitcher you need to watch out for.
This is not the best stat when you are deciding which pitcher you should bet on. However, if you are making a simple moneyline bet this stat can be useful to you especially when a pitcher with a strong win-loss record faces off against a batter with a weak win-loss record.
Baseball Betting Tip 2. Watch Out For Pitching Splits
If you follow the MLB closely you probably won’t be surprised when you see a batting team score 10 runs in one game and then get completely shut down in the next game,especially if the opposing team has an amazing pitcher.
This is why pitching can be one of the biggest variables you need to keep in mind while betting on Baseball.
The stats we mentioned earlier like WHIP, ERA and win-loss recorders can help you make good predictions but these statistics don’t take all of the variables into account.
Apart from looking at the performance of pitchers against an average lineup, you should look into their performance under specific conditions they’ll face during an upcoming MLB game.
These are called splits. We’ve mentioned three splits you need to look into when you decide to bet on a baseball game:
There is a little known secret when it comes to the parks in Major League Baseball. That secret is the fact that all the pitching mounds in the MLB are differ by firmness and texture and this fact can affect a pitcher’s performance.
Apart from the support of the home fans, a less known fact about why pitcher’s perform better at home is because they are used to the pitching mound on their home ground.
But you shouldn’t assume that just because of this reason the pitcher will not perform better at other grounds. A pitcher may in fact perform better in parks where the pitching mound fits his playing style.
For example, in stadiums on the west coast and in parks with deeper fences the ball tends not to fly too far. These kinds of pitches favor fly-ball pitchers.
You can find a pitcher’s home vs road split or performance on websites like baseball reference.
It is also common to see a difference in a pitcher’s performance during day games and night games.
No one really knows why this difference exists. But looking at day/night splits can be essential in helping you pick out the best pitchers in an MLB game.
There isn’t a massive disparity in the performance of some pitchers in the home/road and day/night splits. Even if there is a significant difference it can sometimes be hard to pin point the reason behind it.
There is however one statistical split that is much more accurate,that stat is the pitcher’s statistical performance when he faces off right handed and left handed hitters. Right handed pitchers have a statistically significant edge when facing right handed hitters. This trend can also be seen in left handed pitchers facing off against left handed batters.
If you want to take advantage of this statistic, all you have to do is to look at whether the majority of a team’s hitters are left handed or right handed. For instance, if a batting team has a majority of right handed hitters they are statistically more likely to fare better against even the top left handed pitchers.
Baseball Betting Tip 3 Ride the Streaks
One of the big things that sets baseball apart from other professional sports is that baseball is essentially played every day. While the National Football League generally has a week between games and National Basketball Association and National Hockey League squads have a limited number of back-to-back games on their schedule (never three days in a row), Major League Baseball players go from early April to early October with just 10-15 days off.
That doesn’t leave very much time to mentally reset from the previous day’s result, which is why streaks seem to last longer in baseball than any other sport. The frustration from a late-inning loss the previous night can easily carry over into the following day, and the confidence gained from a few impressive victories often snowballs into a sustained run of success.
Although former Orioles manager Earl Weaver once famously said that “momentum is only as strong as tomorrow’s starting pitcher,” we don’t totally agree. Given the opportunity to bet on a confident team with momentum or a struggling team that seems to be waiting for the next thing to go wrong, we’ll gladly take our chances with the more confident side, especially the longer the streak goes on.
Baseball Betting Tip 4. Every Underdog Has Its Day in the Sun
In the MLB there is a significant difference between the top teams and the rest of the teams in the league. Teams like the Yankeers,Dodgers, and Red Sox are worth $5.25 Billion,$3.57 Billion and $3.46 Billion respectively. These richer teams are often able to attract the best talent and get the best drafts.
Whereas teams like Tampa Bay Rays and Miami Marlins are worth just $1.05 Billion and $990 Million respectively and can’t compete with the likes of the Yankees and the Dodgers to attract the same caliber of players.
This gives the financially stronger teams a significant advantage over financially weaker teams over an MLB season. But in spite of this fact, when it comes to Major League Baseball, anything is possible.
Skill does play an important role in deciding the outcome of a game but luck also has an equal importance in doing so.
Even the worst teams in the MLB win 40% of their games while the best MLB teams don’t win more than 60% of their games. So as you can see, in spite of the of money playing a role in deciding the fate of a team over the course of an MLB season, the underdogs statistically have a good chance of pulling off an upset against the season favorites.
Because of this reason you shouldn’t bet on the favorites in an MLB game when the odds for the favorites to win is -200 or more (for our readers from Europe that’s 1.5 in decimal odds) because that means there is usually good value to be found here if you are to bet on the underdog.
Baseball Betting Tip 5. Stay Disciplined
Our final baseball betting tip is also valid for pretty much any sport and that tip is to be disciplined with your bankroll.
Cold streaks where you don’t win many bets are common during a long MLB season. Even the most experienced baseball bettors will endure this. A lot of baseball games can come down to pure luck even when you have done all the research.
You have to resist the urge to raise the size of your bet on the next game to recover the money you lost in one game. This only leads to a vicious cycle which can result in a lot of frustration and in some situations, even bankruptcy.
It is important to treat baseball betting as a form of entertainment where you set aside a certain amount of money every month and ensure that you don’t exceed this amount.